Friday, February 10, 2012

they moved my cheese, my cans of tomatoes, my frozen fish...

I'm off kilter. I'm surprisingly anxious and I'm breathing too hard.  This shouldn't be so upsetting. I should just deal with it. Or leave.  I grab the items on my grocery list, nothing extra, and get the hell out of Dodge.  My Kroger is being renovated.

They remodeled the two ends first and added space to both sides. It made for a messy experience, but everything was where it had always been.  Then. Then they opened up the ends, made a pathway to connect them, and began to remodel the middle. 

I freaked out. The store is huge, and the disconnect between the two ends makes it feel more so.  They've shifted all the produce from one end of the store to the opposite end, frozen stuff is somewhere, and the bakery is now on the left. Or something.  I didn't stay to analyze the changes.  I couldn't find my cheese.

I've been shopping at that particular Kroger because it is was small. No longer. I cook from whole ingredients and don't need a lot of prepared anything, which is what they're increasing.  Chef Somebody's Prepared Dinners.  I know many people enjoy the convenience, but why do they have to do this to my store?

I moved to Publix. So many of my neighbors swear it is better anyway. I decided to give it a month to see if I could get used to it. They certainly don't keep the cheese where I could easily find it.  I wrote down a quick summary of the items in each aisle. I gave myself the time to find items, and I asked employees for help locating things. I took advantage of their coupons and discounts.

And I spent, on average, $25 more each week.

So now what?  Do I go back to the panic-attack-inducing Kroger?  Wait it out at Publix until the Kroger renovations are finished and then buck up and go back? Pay for peace of mind at Publix? (I might have a new jingle for them there...)

All I wanted was my cheese.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

the gene pool

I'm just gonna come right out and say it:  I think my kids are smarter than me.

I have acknowledged that they both know more about music than I do. I tried, I really did. I took Piano 011 (note that I did not qualify for 101, but 011) in college and continued with private lessons before Pook was born. I can play some things- if I know what they're supposed to sound like. But, I just can't read music.  I can't make that leap from notes to sounds in my head. I'd like to be able to see a new hymn and know what it will sound like. I can't.

My kids have their daddy's musical brain. And, while I'm a bit sad that I haven't been able to keep up with them at piano, I'm generally ok with it.  I didn't manage to keep up with them in baseball either. This is ok.

But Pook just received a major award (no, not a lamp in the shape of a woman's leg) at school for his academic achievement. A few kids were chosen from each school in the county, and his school included him.

I was more surprised than I should have been.  I know Pook gets good grades. I know he's done well on standardized tests.  He attends a public school, but there is no lack of bright kids at our neighborhood school. I guess I just didn't know he was at the top.

I shouldn't leave out Bug. His first standardized tests amazed me too. He whizzes through homework, assuming he'll know it all- which he does- and so I stay on the sidelines.

I'm not saying I'm not smart. I learn new tasks quickly. I don't remember facts like CD, Pook and maybe even Bug (the call is still out on him), instead I process information well. I tie together all the loose ends and try to make sense of facts and how they relate. Holistic. Maybe "Wholistic" even. As an adult, this serves me just fine, as long as I avoid trivia games. 

The thing is, I  think both boys have this skill too. Right now this is more noticeable in Pook's brain than in Bug's, just because of age. But they both seem to have such well-balanced brains, left and right. They love to draw, and can make representations of things they've hardly examined. Bug is our Great Explainer, able to (and always wanting to) explain how he does the things he does.

And they "get" music. And they're fact wizards.

So I've been asking myself, "where did I get such smart children?" and the answer I have accepted is that I fell in love with CD's brain and together we produced some amazing kids, possibly better than their two halves.